Without fail, every time I try to post something online these days, I just… can’t. I’ve finally figured out why.
In real life, most of my existence is hidden away — that’s what happens when you’re a mostly housebound, mostly bedbound person. My life online becomes a more varied experience than my physical life. After all, my words are the same whether published from an exotic café or from my bed. My mind is free to roam, even when my body is not. And the Internet is how I communicate with my friends and family, follow along in their lives, and vice versa.
Sometimes my digital life feels more real to me than my physical one, especially when my body is more a source of pain and frustration than joy or blissful neutrality. What I post here therefore takes on much more meaning than it needs to do. Every word and photo becomes so important, because they are my voice, my self, finally able to be seen. Which also means the pressure is on.
Mum and Maria are sitting on the veranda. Maria is in the shade of the parasol. On the table between them is a notebook with lots of scribbles.
Mum: What are you writing?
Maria: A blog post, I think.
Mum: About what?
Maria (quoting): “Are we trying to not be human?”
Mum (laughs): Pixie cuts or humanity, there’s no middle ground with you, is there?
Maria: … no.
I keep seeing more and more ways our society wants to avoid the fact that we’re human beings. That we live in human bodies. It has a tinge of desperation to it. Sometimes it gets harmful and dangerous, like a weird version of dehumanizing someone: oh, we’re not like them, they’re uncivilized and animalistic and basic, while we are modern humans who are above all that. Other times it’s almost funny, the lengths we’ll go to in our denial.
… is certainly not a question good old Shakespeare had to deal with, but I’m sure he would sympathize nonetheless. I’ve been debating this with myself (and some of my friends, poor things) for literal years now. I’ve written this very blog post at least ten times, sending it to the aforementioned poor friends, who cheered and gave me the a-okay. I then hid the text in my Google Docs, adding it to the previously written versions. But I am doing this. I am writing. I am writing this blog post right now, because if I don’t I’m afraid I’ll abandon the whole question and join Shakespeare in not writing another word (sorry, William, too soon?).
In case this post just showed up in your feed and you have no idea who I am or why you’re reading this, allow me. This is my blog. It used to be about fashion, personal style, pixie cuts, vintage clothing, body positivity, and other random thoughts. Then I stopped blogging about the fashion stuff and wrote just the random thoughts. Then I got a virus on my balance nerve, and ever since I’ve been debating this bloody question: to blog or not to blog? Read More
Is anyone still reading this blog? If so — hi. Hello. I’m sorry it’s been so quiet here. I’ve been sick, you see, and not just with my usual combo of ME/CFS and mental health issues. In January a virus decided to settle in on my balance nerve, where the balance organs in the ear communicate with my brain. As a result, my head could no longer understand what was up or down, whether I was moving or sitting still. It’s such a small thing, such a small part of the body, but the impact it’s had on my life is massive.
I spent most of the beginning of the year in bed, clutching my duvet in an effort to still the world. I couldn’t focus on anything more than moving as little as possible. The dizziness was awful. The nausea was worse, and relentless. The headaches were both dull and sharp at the same time. The tiredness was even heavier than I was used to from ME/CFS. And I was so afraid. It’s a terrible thing when your mind literally cannot understand the world, as the lizard part of your brain becomes convinced that you are dying, and the lizard brain does not listen to reason. I only left the house to force myself to various doctor appointments. Read More
Who are you? Who do you want to be? How will you get there? Everything in life seems to be asking me this.
Autumn asks. For me, this has always been a time for new beginnings and important decisions, much more so than New Year’s. With autumn comes my birthday, too, and this time it’s the big 30. It feels like no big deal, and a really, really big deal; I zigzag between the two like a bolt of lightning. A birthday is a wonderful thing, another year of life I’ve been given. Zig. By the time my mother was thirty, she had one kid and another not far away. Zag. Thirty now isn’t what thirty was thirty years ago. Zig. At thirty, my mum had released six records and toured every part of the country. Zag. I have such wonderful friends now who want to celebrate with me. Zig. I have three “educations” (a year of English studies, a bachelor in pop/rock vocals, and a fashion consultant diploma), but no job. Zag. I wouldn’t be eighteen again if someone paid me. Zig. I wish I didn’t feel like I’m running out of time. Zag. When I’m properly old I’ll laugh at how young and naïve I was at thirty. Zig, zag, zig, zag. Read More